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Vail Daily letter: Freedom of choice

Wayne (Hare, letters to the editor, March 7 and 14), it’s hard to account for the many injustices in the world, with a plethora of shaky rationale given by one historian or another. Difficult to find harmony any place, whether it be:

• Mistreatment of women in Muslim countries.

• Catholic and Protestant divisions in Ireland, and religious bias therein, at work, play or politics. (e.g. my Irish grandfather was excommunicated from the Catholic Church for marrying an English Protestant).

• In the ’20s, Irish immigrants here in the U.S. were publicly maligned, denied work, access to pubs, loans and housing.

• In Sao Paulo, Brazil, native dark-skinned Indians are maligned socially, and excluded from working class neighborhoods. Same in Haiti.

• Christians are being murdered for their faith in countries all over the world, especially Islamic ones.

• White farmers in Nigeria who have owned their land for generations have been mandated by the government to give it back to blacks with the rationale that they were here first. Land returned for the most part has been unworked, grown fallow, and production terminated. Those few who refuse to leave are shot.

I take no sides with Butch Mazzuca or you in this diatribe, one echoed unfortunately by Al Sharpton and others in the grievance industry. Recently it was discovered that George Soros is perhaps one of his financiers, whose financial model grows incrementally in the midst of social chaos. A shame that Sharpton ignores his tax liability from gifts such as these, in whatever manner he chooses to rationalize them.

Bill O’Reilly says it how he sees it, in a ratings-are-everything-media-world-reluctant-to-tell-the-truth way. Whether he benefited from a banking system that still favors those whose credit is worthy of risk, or not, misses the point. Mortgage lending today replicates practices of yesteryear, following shareholder and government mandates to operate within required risk guidelines … or be shut down. Banks are asked to keep reserves to cover bad debt or risk failing as they did in 2008. The grievance industry thrives on the practice as a perfect example of race discrimination.

While we focus on discrimination, remember also the “coolies” and names given Chinese during the gold rush? Decades later, the Asians still prefer to live and work in neighborhoods where their culture thrives, typically within strong family models and economic success. Are they also not subject to hardship, as in your depiction of the black family in the Depression? The Chinese just buckled down, loathe to be seen in the unemployment lines where community shame would be a consequence.

The black male who has two choices you speak of: Go to college or be locked up. Not exactly a sunny forecast. Did this happen to Colin Powell? Condoleezza Rice? Ben Carson? Obama? Lou Rawls? I read today in the Denver Post about a young man from Senegal, Dominique Badji. His dad worked for the Peace Corps, insisting he pursue college. A volunteer (white) saw his determination and helped him settle in D.C., boarding school, and now he is a graduate from Boston University in international studies. He is also now playing for the Colorado Rapids soccer team. Did discrimination deter him? I think not.

George Will, a writer with the Washington Post, a liberal newspaper, recently wrote about Daniel Moynihan, a social scientist, who wrote, 50 years ago, a report: “The Negro Family: The Case for National Action.”

The crisis he discerned was that 23.6 percent of black births were to unmarried women. His diagnosis: “Father absenteeism, and inadequately socialized adolescent males, leading to dangerous neighborhoods, broken families dominated by women, never acquiring any stable relationship to male authority.”

Today, 48 percent of first births to blacks and other ethnicities are to unmarried women and more than 3 million mothers under 30 are not living with the fathers of their children. You speak of limited access to health care to abort, after “just deciding” to have lower infant mortality. Condoms and IUDs are designed to alleviate this quandary, but as in Africa, street cred doesn’t allow either to preserve male spontaneity culture. Yes, Wayne, life is all about the decisions you make and the consequences that follow!

Wayne, Dad is really the root cause of this teenager wardrobe malfunction … not white society’s reaction to this dilemma. The moms are the survivors, bless them — they go to church and pray, use the broom handle where needed, nag about homework, feed them when they are home, upbraid them about imminent jail time, and the character of their friends.

You speak of incarceration as the new Jim Crow, as if the fault lies with the justice system, police bias and stereotyping. Understand if you would the eight-hour shift in a police precinct. Prior to leaving the station on foot or car patrol, the sergeant directs his officers to be on the outlook for certain criminals, car plates, lost children, sexual predators dressed a certain way, shoplifters with MOs. Eighty percent of crime in most inner cities is Latino and African American-caused. It is only a statistic then that during an eight-hour shift, officers encounter blacks and Latinos 80 percent of the time. Interaction then, is lopsided — so then are complaints and accusations of bias. Am I missing something?

In closing, Wayne, I would echo many others in my world who understand that the racial divide cannot be legislated against. Without exception, my universe of academics, journalists, lawyers, doctors, Realtors, bankers and ordinary folk all long for a change in behavior from black America, one that happens due to freedom of choice, something both their and your maker gave us at birth.

Pat Mitchell

Avon


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